μην ακούσει το αιμα καμιά αρκούδα

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dukaine

Senior Member
English - American
I think this phrase has something to do blood attracting a bear to the scent, but would like to confirm. Α girl has just killed a deer she found in a trap.

Του ζήτησε συγνώμη για τον πόνο κι άναψε φωτιά. Έπιασε να καπνίζει όσα κομμάτια έκοβε πριν σκουληκιάσουν. Και φυλαγόταν μην ακούσει το αίμα καμιά αρκούδα.

Thanks!
 
  • Perseas

    Senior Member
    I think this phrase has something to do blood attracting a bear to the scent, but would like to confirm.
    Yes. Here it means "to smell".
    It's the meaning no. 8:
    8)Aισθάνομαι με αισθητήριο του σώματός μου· (εδώ της όσφρησης) οσφραίνομαι: την μυρωδιάν ακούσι (Eρωτοπ. 159)
    Επιτομή Λεξικού Κριαρά

    This is not the standard use of ακούω, it's rather related to literature or dialectal.
     
    Last edited:

    dukaine

    Senior Member
    English - American
    Yes. Here it means "to smell".
    It's the meaning no. 8:
    8)Aισθάνομαι με αισθητήριο του σώματός μου· (εδώ της όσφρησης) οσφραίνομαι: την μυρωδιάν ακούσι (Eρωτοπ. 159)
    Επιτομή Λεξικού Κριαρά

    This is not the standard use of ακούω, it's rather related to literature or dialectal.
    Okay, so the word order is a bit different than English, so would I be correct to translate this as "no bear smelled the blood" or "any bear didn't smell the blood"?
     

    ioanell

    Senior Member
    Greek
    Okay, so the word order is a bit different than English, so would I be correct to translate this as "no bear smelled the blood" or "any bear didn't smell the blood"?
    The correct -in my opinion- translation is: “She was watching out that no bear would smell the blood”.
     

    Αγγελος

    Senior Member
    Greek
    Also note that μη (without a preceding να) is the conjunction used to express fear:
    Φοβάμαι μην πεθάνω (=I am afraid I may die)
    Ανησυχώ μη δεν γίνω ποτέ καλά (=I am worried I may never get well)
    Πρόσεχε μη μας ακούσουν (=Take care lest we be heard)
    Similarly here, φυλαγόταν μην ακούσει το αίμα καμιά αρκούδα = she took precautions lest some bear smelt the blood.
    The admittedly unusual use of ακούω to mean 'perceive' is not solely Cretan; people do say such things as ο δυόσμος δεν ακούγεται = you can't taste the mint (that has gone into a dish).
     

    Helleno File

    Senior Member
    English - UK
    Hi Άγγελε. Verbs of fearing are another "blind spot" of mine which I can trace back to school Latin, even though I was quite good at it!

    Is it possible to say φοβάμαι ότι. Or even πως? And isnt it supposed to be "φοβάμαι/ανησυχώ μήπως του συνέβη κάτι"? Or are some of these interchangeable? :confused:

    Your other examples are indirect commands and I think I'm clear that μη(ν) is the correlative pronoun.
     

    Andrious

    Senior Member
    If you say «Φοβάμαι ότι/πως του συνέβη κάτι», you find it very possible that something happened to him.
    If you say «Φοβάμαι μήπως του συνέβη κάτι», you don't find it that possible.
     

    Helleno File

    Senior Member
    English - UK
    Thanks Andrious. Your pair of examples are very clear. :thumbsup: I had wondered if μήπως expressed a (high) degree of doubt. It's helpful to have the two possibilites.

    I think the difficult example for me is from Άγγελος when he writes "Φοβάμαι μην πεθάνω". He translates it as "I'm afraid I may die", when it looks like a negative statement to me! And then he gives "Ανησυχώ μη δεν γίνω ποτέ καλά." for an actual negative. I think something like this was one of my difficulties this kind of construction with Latin all those years ago!
     

    Αγγελος

    Senior Member
    Greek
    If you say «Φοβάμαι ότι/πως του συνέβη κάτι», you find it very possible that something happened to him.
    If you say «Φοβάμαι μήπως του συνέβη κάτι», you don't find it that possible.
    «Φοβάμαι ότι/πως του συνέβη κάτι» definitely means "I believe something unpleasant may have happened to him." «Φοβάμαι ότι/πως...» can even be a less direct way of stating something unpleasant: «Φοβάμαι πως η γυναίκα μου με απατά» means "I have cause to believe that my wife is cheating on me."
    «Φοβάμαι μήπως του συνέβη κάτι» does not mean that I don't find it possible that something unpleasant may have happened to him; I definitely worry about that possibility, I just don't think it as likely as if I said «φοβάμαι ότι...» «Φοβάμαι μήπως η γυναίκα μου με απατά» means "I am worried that my wife may be cheating on me, but I am not sure yet."
     
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